Solo not Single

… yet singled out for the Supplement?

The box I check these days is widow, it never dawned on me that it is actually considered single. Growing in a new world, a new life, there are still so many second-firsts that I am encountering. But I was absolutely stunned at this latest discovery in my solitary lifestyle.

The first time I traveled “solo” was my first introduction to “single supplement” charges.

What is a Single Supplement? – you ask

Well, a single supplement is a charge paid by a solo traveler to compensate a hotel or cruise ship for losses incurred because only one person is using a room or cabin. Most hotel rooms and ship cabins are built with the assumption that at least two people will occupy them. In fact, nearly all hotel and cruise pricing is based on double occupancy.

Single supplements range from 10 to 100 percent of the double occupancy rate.

Hotel and cruise ship operators claim that charging a single supplement helps them recover the fixed costs of maintaining the room or cabin, such as utilities and cleaning.

Which, in my opinion is ridiculous, you’re charged an additional fee, for less usage of the room and cleaning for, less one person?

Some cruise lines and tour operators offer a roommate,finding service [yeah the terminology alone – screams NO WAY] to avoid the additional cost, if you sign up to be matched with another solo traveler. A few tour companies cater exclusively to single travelers, while others offer a limited selection of supplement-free itineraries. Other options for avoiding the single supplement include joining a singles travel network, which can help you find travel partners, or its stated, find a roommate on your own.

The New York Times reported in an article the cost of a superior ocean-view room on a Royal Caribbean International seven-night Alaska cruise. For two adults is $1,539 each. A single traveler’s cost for the same room is $2,843. A single supplement in the amount of $1,304.

Depending on your point of view, single supplements are either unavoidable and fair, or else the worst act of perfidy in the travel industry.

No matter how it is calculated, or how much it is, the cost of a single person traveling alone should never be more, than the cost of two people traveling together.